Understanding about a little bit of bowling etiquette can certainly help increase your enjoyment, as well as the enjoyment of those people around you. The truth is that everyone bowls, from serious bowling experts to a group of novices just looking for some fun on a Saturday evening. Because of this, misunderstandings sometimes happen. Someone new to the sport simply does not always realize that there are many unspoken bowling rules to follow. This is why a quick lesson in bowling etiquette may come in handy.
The right away. When you and a bowler in the lane next to both simultaneously get ready to bowl, it is appropriate for one of you to yield and let the other bowler go first. Proper bowling etiquette states that the bowler on the right should have the right away; but this rule is not always well known or followed. So a good tip is to just let the other guy go first.
Don’t hang out in front of the lane. The area in front of the lane is known as the approach. This area is only for bowlers getting ready to bowl. After you throw the ball, exit the approach immediately. Do not hang out there too long. When you are in the approach, you have the tendency to become a distraction to other bowlers in the lanes near you.
Be ready to bowl. This rule really depends on the group you are bowling with. You really do want to be as efficient as possible. So always be ready to bowl; it helps speed the game up. Of course, this bit of bowling etiquette only applies if the people you are with are serious or in a hurry. If you guys are just trying to have a little fun, then you can probably relax your guard a bit.
Do not eat or drink on the hard wood. Keep any food or drink back behind the actually bowling area. This is more about safety than bowling etiquette. Bowling lanes are slippery, and bowling shoes have not traction. So a little bit of spilled drink or dropped food can result in disaster.
Do not be too obnoxious. You can cheer, hoot and howler when it is appropriate. In fact, it really is against bowling etiquette not to do those things. Still, keep in mind that there is a fine line between having a good time and yelling when someone is setting up their approach. Just be mindful that other people around you can become easily distracted, and thus easily annoyed.
Ask before using. If someone brings their own bowling ball, or other bowling equipment, this does not give you the right to use it. Bowlers are very particular about their balls. In fact, you can actually ruin the line on the ball if you throw it incorrectly. So, if you want to use someone else’s bowling ball, make sure you ask first.